With President Trump’s hospitalization due to the China Virus, along with virtually his entire top echelon of advisors who tested positive (sans Mike Pence), Democrats see an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone, metaphorically speaking. First, they get Trump off the campaign trail, whereby every single metric except polling he is leading, and second, they see an opportunity to stall the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett past the election date.
Fox’s Neil Cavuto was already touting the 25th Amendment to remove Trump (a tactic that, of course, failed Rod Rosenstein, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, and the coup cabal). Democrats such as Chuck Schumer are insisting that the Barrett hearings be pushed back. Of course, they would.
There are multiple vote-by-mail cases headed for the Supreme Court, which is certainly going to take them because appellate courts have ruled in different ways. But will the Supes hear the case before election day? If so, would it be a four-four tie without Barrett? And can Barrett be confirmed in time?
One of the most concerning for Republicans is the case in North Carolina, where the deck is stacked against them. A Democrat governor, aided by a corrupt election board, and a liberal appellate court, will likely rule that the North Carolina votes that come in by mail be counted until Jesus comes. Elsewhere—in Arizona, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and others—Republicans have won at the district and appellate level. Democrat appeals are already en route.
So where does the China Virus Chaos leave the nomination of Judge Barrett?
Despite Democrat claims that the hearings need to be postponed, for now, they do not. A hearing, which involves taking down sworn testimony, needs only one senator present. The Judicial Committee Chairman, Lindsey Graham will do fine. (It’s odd that Graham, who has proven a titanic disappointment on calling witnesses or investigating the corruption of the Deep State, has been stellar in issues involving judges.) Moreover, Judge Barrett can appear virtually as many nominees have in the past. One key date is October 15 at the “markup” for the nomination. There, nine senators must be present. This means that COVID-infected Mike Lee and Thom Tillis do not even have to be present, as there are ten other Republicans. All Democrats could refuse to come in and the markup would still go through. This means the nomination will likely be “held over” because of Democrat objections.
Then comes the key date: on October 22, all Republicans must be present to vote Judge Barrett to the floor. They cannot vote virtually: they must be physically in the room. As today is October 3, and quarantine rules are generally for 14 days (but this number is fudged and also can be waived if a subject tests negative two days in a row), both Lee and Tillis should be back in the saddle by October 17 with plenty of margin.
My court guru, Zen Master, has said the final confirmation could come between October 24 and 26, leaving President Trump (whose doctors have reported that he is doing well and has no temperature!) to do the unofficial swearing-in on Halloween or November 2 . . . the day before the election.
If Republicans in North Carolina can stall till then, they should have a 6-3 Supreme Court on their side. Critics of this strategy say that too many votes will have come in from North Carolina by then, but it’s already not all that clear that the vote-by-mail process is working to the Democrats’ advantage. Already we are seeing a shortfall in black votes (as I have predicted for over a year). Remember, a shortfall of African American votes nationally to the tune of 5%, on top of Trump taking 4-5% more this time than he did in 2016, works out to between three to five million votes. In other words, merely the shortfall in black votes threatens to give Trump the popular vote this election.
Amidst the China Virus chaos, Kellyanne Conway—who had already officially left Trump’s team—-was also infected. I don’t believe in conspiracy theories, and I don’t think anyone “weaponized” the COVID against a particular Trump gathering (i.e., the Barrett announcement ceremony). However, it is strikingly odd that in the past four months:
- Steve Bannon was indicted for various charges by the Southern District of New York (one of the most politicized federal prosecutorial districts in the nation).
- Brad Parscale, after being removed by Trump after the Tulsa rally, is now under investigation for “stealing” up to $40 million from the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee.
- Conway tested positive for COVID-17.
Here were three of the four campaign “pillars” of Trump’s 2016 victory—with the only remaining person in the campaign management group, Jared Kushner, still standing.
Whatever the validity of any of the claims or charges against Parscale or Bannon, the fact is either or both could have been valuable resources to Trump down the stretch. Having them out of the way does nothing but help Joe Biden.
The Democrats need this. According to statistics compiled by “Freeper” bort, Republicans have crushed Democrats in registering voters in September R/D:
- West Va: 10,808/1365
- S.Dakota: 4334/1221
- Pennsylvania: 64,064/29325
- N. Carolina: 31,333/17614
- N. Mexico: 8242/5506
- New Jersey: 22,295/19776
- Nevada: 14,151/8911
- Nebraska: 8040/3455
- Kentucky: 21,274/(5954)
- Iowa: 10,821/4476
- Delaware: 2458/2936
- Colorado 14,467/17490
- California 167K/114K
- Louisiana 20,330/4670
- Utah 14,641/14,241
- Oklahoma—Reps have gained net 100,000 since ’19
And just this week, Republicans in North Carolina slashed another 2,000 off the Democrats’ lead.
In short, the Democrats were handed a final card to play in the China Virus. Yet even with that it may not be enough. Already—though it’s extremely early—it appears the Democrats in Florida will fall about 40,000 short of the minimum number they need to win that state. Thus, even armed with a pandemic that has shut down the nation for much of the year, assisted by self-inflicted wounds and prosecutions of Trump campaign officials, and obstructed by the hearings process, it appears both President Trump and Amy Coney Barrett are on pace for a very good November.
Larry Schweikart is the co-author with Michael Allen of the New York Times #1 bestseller, A Patriot’s History of the United States, author of Reagan: The American President, and founder of the Wild World of History curriculum website with a full curriculum in US and World History since 1775, including teacher guides, student workbooks, tests, maps/graphs, and video lessons to accompany every unit (www.wildworldofhistory.com).